Category Archives: Startup

VIZIYA in Deloitte Fast 50 for third year straight

Deloitte

 

November 13th – Hamilton, Ontario

VIZIYA ranks number 17 in the Deloitte Fastest Growing Technology Companies, marking the third straight year VIZIYA has received the honour

“Fast 50 companies are entrepreneurial, innovate and demonstrate leadership,” said Pascal Lamoureux, Partner and Leader for Deloitte’s Fast 50 program. “Their commitment and achievements are critical to the growth of the Canadian technology sector.”

To qualify for the Deloitte Technology Fast 50TM ranking, companies must have been in business for at least five years, have revenues of at least $5 million, be headquartered in Canada, own proprietary technology, and conduct research and development activities in Canada. A panel of industry experts evaluate and judge companies based on four key criteria: competitive advantage; size, growth, and market attractiveness; management effectiveness and organization; and financial performance.

VIZIYA’s Previous Rankings

2012 – 4th
2013 – 20th

About the Deloitte Technology Fast 50TM

The Deloitte Technology Fast 50TM program is Canada’s pre-eminent technology awards program. Celebrating business growth, innovation and entrepreneurship, the program features four distinct categories including the Technology Fast 50TM Ranking, Companies-to-Watch Awards (early-stage Canadian tech companies in business less than five years, with the potential to be a future Deloitte Technology Fast 50TM candidate) and the Leadership Awards (companies that demonstrate technological leadership and innovation within the industry.)

Ranggo captures grand prize at Lion’s Lair 2014

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Hamilton, Ontario October 6th, 2014: On Thursday October 2nd, Ranggo was named the grand prize winner in Lion’s Lair 2014. In its fourth year, Lion’s Lair is an annual business competition presented by The Hamilton Chamber of Commerce and Innovation Factory. After filtering down all business plans submitted by more than 70 companies, ten companies were selected as finalists. The 10 finalists were given the opportunity to pitch their ideas to a panel of Hamilton’s top business experts, the “Lions”, for a chance to win over $160,000 in cash and in-kind resources. The sold-out final gala event held on Thursday night at Carmen’s brought together the entrepreneurship and innovation community in Hamilton, Ontario.

Incorporated in Ontario in March 2014, this is not the first business recognition for Ranggo. Earlier in April 2014, Ranggo was again a Top 5 finalist in Halton’s region own business competition, The Python’s Pit. Ranggo was one of 3 companies to receive follow up meetings from the investors, “The Python’s”. During the very short period since its inception,Ranggo has partnered and piloted in multiple local restaurants and food festivals and events in the Hamilton and Burlington area.

Ranggo is an all-in-one feedback, customer retention and acquisition service for restaurants. “We all love to eat and we use our smartphones all the time, especially while sitting on our tables at the restaurant”, said Peter Basl, CEO. “Ranggo allows restaurants to leverage this opportunity by collecting valuable real-time feedback from their patrons and use this feedback to attract more customers through online and social network venues.” Ranggo is collecting feedback down to the menu item level and its innovative business model relies on rewarding its users with instant restaurant coupons and savings. “The overall process brings the customers to the restaurant more often and through the app’s food search engine, new customers can easily find those restaurants serving the best dishes they are craving,” said Noha Abdelaziz, COO. “Ranggo simply creates a win-win situation for both the restaurants and the customers.” Ranggo is a subscription based service for restaurants and its app is free to download for users. “Since July 2014, we have been piloting the service in 10 restaurants in Hamilton and Burlington. The results are amazing. In such a short period of time, Ranggo was able to engage with diners and collect more feedback than any existing service in the market today,” said Mo. Shahin, CTO.

In the Lion’s Lair competition, Ranggo was awarded a total of $25,000 in cash and in-kind services from KPMG, VA Partners and Albanese Branding valued at $27,500. The prize will be used to speed up customer acquisition process as well as further application development. During the Lion’s Lair Gala, the Lions announced the win stating the main reasons behind their choice to be: Ranggo’s strong team, solid business model as well as its potential of global scalability.

Ranggo’s cofounders are Peter Basl, Noha Abdelaziz and Mo Shahin. They are all McMaster University alumni with postgraduate degrees. Peter holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering from McMaster University and currently finishing his Masters in Engineering Entrepreneurship & Innovation at McMaster too. Noha holds a Masters in Civil Engineering from McMaster, while Mo is a serial entrepreneur who has graduated from McMaster’s Masters of Engineering Entrepreneurship and Innovation in 2008. The team collectively has more than 20 years of experience both on the technical and business levels having worked in leading industry positions as well as co-founded multiple businesses in the past.

 

For more information on Ranggo, visit http://www.ranggo.ca

For more information on the Lion’s Lair visit http://lionslair.ca/

Ranggo pitch in 1 min: http://youtu.be/LmHjXNQuqdo

Contact Details:
media@ranggo.ca

Interview with Roomer creator Simar Singh

roomer

 

I remember in my undergraduate days that the libraries weren’t always the best place to study. There was the noise – Mills Library was known (affectionately?) as “Club Mills”, but there was also the lack of seats. Often times you were better off finding an empty classroom. Which was great when you found one, but time consuming.

That’s why I found this new app called Roomer by Simar Singh (@simarr_) to be a pretty neat idea. Check out the interview with Simar below:

 

simarTell me about yourself.

I’m currently a third year computer science student at McMaster University. I’m passionate about all aspects of software development. I have been working on projects for as long as I can remember, and I aim to build projects that make people’s lives easier.

 

What is Roomer?

Roomer is an android app that helps students find study space on campus. Roomer shows you all of the empty classrooms and lecture halls.

 

Why did you decide to create Roomer?

Many students have experienced difficulty finding a good study space on campus. Libraries are often crowded, especially during exam period. Group study rooms are frequently in short supply. Roomer aims to solve this problem. Roomer shows the user which classrooms and lecture halls are currently empty on campus. They can then choose their favorite spot to work on their assignments, hold group meetings or practice presentations.

 

roomer1

 

How does Roomer know which rooms on campus are available?

Roomer’s server side algorithms uses the master timetable system provided by universities to figure out what rooms are currently not being used.

 

How has the response to Roomer been thus far?

Roomer has already been downloaded 350+ times in its first week of launch.

 

roomer2

 

Will you try to make money off of Roomer? How?

Roomer was built to enrich students’ campus experience. Roomer will be for free for the foreseeable feature.

 

What tools did you use to build Roomer?

The backend was built with Python and the Android app was written in Java. I used Amazon Web Services to host Roomer’s backend.

 

roomer3

 

What are your future plans for Roomer?

Roomer is currently available for McMaster University, University of Waterloo, and Western University. I plan on expanding Roomer’s service to more Universities across Ontario.

 

Do you have any advice for students planning to release apps?

Focus on user experience and what problems your app will help its users solve.

 

Try out Roomer on Android today!

gplay

 

Interview with Wulves team leader Julia Voortman

Check out the following interview with Wulves team leader Julia Voortman – and see Julia demo Wulves live at DemoCampHamilton18 this Monday September 29th at McMaster!

Wulves has also recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to help finish and improve the game!

 

How did you get into indie video game development?

When I was 10 years old, a friend introduced me to Horseland.com, which was/is a horse simulation game where you could breed and race virtual horses. I was absolutely crazy about horses at the time and spent hours playing, but eventually got bored and decided what I wanted to do was make a horse sim game myself. I knew absolutely nothing about game development at the time, but started writing down my ideas and looking for people to learn from and partner with. A girl from another sim game I played at the time could code and we found a couple of artists and after a few months we had a game: The Ultimate Horse. It was very simple and the graphics were terrible, but by the end of the summer we had about two thousand players and a little community of people who actually enjoyed playing what we made. I’ve been hooked making games ever since!

 

wulves

 

What is Wulves?

So Wulves is primarily a virtual pet simulation, the goal is to successfully raise your wulf pups to adulthood by training and feeding them. It’s a creative game as well; players design their wulves themselves, choosing from the (currently) dozens of marking and body modification options and any colour available in a hex code. Eventually we’d like to release a feature giving players the ability to draw their own markings directly onto their wulves in the browser, and give them the option to save and share their new markings with other players. Wulves that make it to adulthood can then be bred with other wulves to create new wulf pups that draw characteristics from their parents (and grandparents, great-grandparents, etc). We have a pretty cool genetic system that make for some interesting offspring outcomes.

Secondarily, it’s a capture and collect game. The game currently has about sixty ‘wild wulflings’ that can be battled and captured while exploring. Wulves also has a few RPG elements; players enter the world of Elm, create their own citizen, join a professionhood to earn currency and level up through it’s ranks, interact with NPC’s, and participate in hidden object quests.

 

wulves2

 

Who is working on Wulves and how long has it been in development?

The ideas for Wulves have been kicking around for quite awhile, but we started actively developing about two years ago. A number of people have contributed over that period, but the main team has been myself and two developers from Albany, Patrick Warner and Beau Breedlove, as well as two really talented artists, Rennie Florence and Isabel Baele, from the US and Belgium respectively.

 

wulves3

 

What is new and exciting about Wulves compared to other browser-based pet games?

I think what’s cool about Wulves is that it gives players the fully fleshed out fantasy world of Elm to explore, with it’s own history and lore and a cast of characters to interact with. The focus is still definitely on the pet simulation aspect of the game, but I think it lends a special extra dimension you don’t find in a lot of games in the genre.

 

wulves4

 

How are you planning to monetize Wulves?

Wulves will be completely free to play; our plan is to monetize micro-transactionally by offering small upgrades and special items.

 

wulves5

 

Can you tell us about the Kickstarter campaign for Wulves?

Sure thing! We’ve just launched a Kickstarter to help fund us on the way to our first beta release. Our goal is to raise $6500 over the next 30 days to help cover the cost of developing our battling system, as well as any additional art assets, and a server upgrade. We’re aiming for a Wulves 1.0 in mid-February.

 

 

What advice do you have for people creating indie video games?

I feel like I haven’t been doing this long enough to be a giver of advice, so these can be taken with a grain of salt. But these are a couple things I’ve learned along the way,

1. At the outset, define the absolute necessities for your game to function, and then finish that before touching anything else. This is something I wish I’d been more disciplined about while developing Wulves, instead of letting myself get carried away polishing little side details, or redirecting development efforts toward cool new features as we thought of them or alpha players suggested them.

2. This one is equally applicable to projects other than game dev. Try not to make announcements about what you’re working on or plan to make, until you’ve made it. This was an eye-opening article for me: http://sivers.org/zipit. I break this one pretty consistently, but I’m working on it. :)

Editor’s note: woah, totally fascinating read!

3. Do your best to always be refuelling your ‘creativity bank’ by reading, watching movies, taking nature hikes, playing every game you can get your hands on. Sometimes the best game ideas or solutions to a problem come from really unexpected places.

 

wulves6

 

What is your long term plan for Wulves?

See #2, haha! A couple shorter term plans would be increased interactivity between the player and their wulves, and taking the game mobile.

 

302

 

How has Hamilton and Platform 302 worked out for you as a place to create Wulves?

Platform 302 came for me at a point where I just could not go on working in my pajamas, feeling constantly like being ‘at work’ while at home, and chair-hogging at Starbucks just to get out of the house. I really can’t say enough about the value of being surrounded by like-minded entrepreneurs; the people there are just incredibly supportive and encouraging, and it’s very motivating to watch the growth of other young businesses. Currently I’m working for a company in Oakville as a web/graphic designer, but I’d love to eventually come back to Platform. We’ll see how things go! :)

 

REfficient Takes on Mexico’s Telecom Market with CDMN Funding

refficientlogoHamilton, Ontario – September 2, 2014 – REfficient will participate in the Canadian Digital Media Network’s (CDMN) Outbound Soft-Landing Fall 2014 Program to help forge the partnerships and connections it needs for international expansion.

REfficient is an online marketplace to source quality telecom and AV equipment affordably and sustainably. Companies get access to other business’ surplus inventory, manufacturers’ surplus and new product with environmental designations. Founded in 2010, REfficient now has customers in 12 companies and in the last year has ensured over 30,000 products were reused. All of Canada’s major cable/telecom companies are now customers.

As telecom operators in Latin America go through technology upgrades, REfficient’s refurbished equipment enables these companies to save money on quality equipment. “We already have customers in Latin America, but we have literally scratched the surface. The market potential in Mexico alone is at least ten times that of Canada,” says REfficient CEO Stephanie McLarty. REfficient applied to the Soft Landing program because of the resources needed to be successful in these markets. “The key is not only to have potential customers know you, but also to build relationships and trust. This is a critical part of doing business in Latin America and this requires resources.”

CDMN’s Soft-Landing Program helps mature startups and SMEs kickstart their international growth by helping them access a foreign market. For a period of up to three months, the participating company can take up residence in a partnered facility that provides the regional support required to help grow its business, as well as receiving up to $4,000 in travel and hotel costs.

“The Soft-Landing Program has already resulted in millions of dollars in new business and investment for our participating companies and generated more than a 30x return on CDMN’s investment of funds and resources,” said Kevin Tuer, CDMN’s Managing Director. “International expansion is more important than ever as a driver of wealth and job creation for the Canadian economy. Our success to date demonstrates the tremendous impact that even a modest investment in global business development can have.”

About the CDMN Soft Landing Program

The Outbound Soft Landing Program runs three times a year and companies must meet a range of criteria, including having a technology product or service that is market ready and has foreign market potential. CDMN also operates an Inbound Soft Landing Program for non-Canadian companies looking to break into the Canadian market. For more information, please visit www.cdmn.ca/soft-landing-program/overview/

About REfficient

REfficient’s transactional marketplace is built on a “triple-win” model, providing large telecom and AV companies a trusted and efficient platform for deriving value from surplus inventory, while offering buyers reliable, often new equipment at savings of 20-50% over traditional sources. This innovative new green model benefits everyone by reducing waste and increasing resource efficiency. You can follow REfficient at @REfficient and www.facebook.com/REfficient.

Media Contact
Mindy Tweedle
Tweedle Productions Inc.
905-512-6514
mindy@tweedleproductions.com

McMaster startup QReserve awarded $25k from OCE

QHamilton, Ontario, September 2, 2014 — McMaster University startup, QReserve Inc., is excited to be awarded $24,896 through Ontario Centres of Excellence’s (OCE) SmartStart program to introduce its publicly available research equipment database platform to universities and colleges across Canada.

“Every year, the federal and provincial governments invest millions of dollars in research tools and resources”, says QReserve Inc.’s CEO, Brandon Aubie. “This funding from OCE will help us help researchers and industry better utilize these resources. The QReserve platform works as a search engine for research equipment and we plan to bring it into university and college campuses across Ontario and the rest of Canada starting this fall.”

QReserve was founded in March of this year by McMaster University PhD graduate, Dr. Brandon Aubie, and McMaster University professors Dr. Fred Capretta and Dr. John Brennan. Their service provides universities and colleges with a turn-key research equipment database platform that is automatically connected with other institutions. This enables students, researchers and industrial users to discover and access resources across campuses and research institutions.

Dr. Capretta explains the impact QReserve’s resource database will have on Canadian researchers: “Obtaining funding for research gets harder and harder every year. So when a university purchases new equipment it’s more important than ever that it gets utilized to its full potential. With QReserve we’re helping people to find this equipment and encouraging collaborative use of existing resources. Bottom line is we’re trying to help research get done and save money at the same time.”

Their proof-of-concept platform was launched this summer at McMaster University containing nearly 300 pieces of equipment and research services and is quickly gaining traction. Aubie adds, “We’ve demonstrated a clear need for this service and are excited to add thousands of new resources for students, researchers and industrial users across the country to discover”.

QReserve is free to access at www.qreserve.com.

 

About QReserve Inc.

QReserve Inc. was founded in 2014 at McMaster University with the aim of making research equipment and resources more accessible to students, faculty and industry. The company provides an open-access online platform for cataloguing and searching research equipment and services across university and college campuses and industrial research service providers. QReserve’s search platform integrates with existing university technology infrastructures to provide a turn-key internal institutional resource database that automatically integrates with other institutional databases. QReserve currently operates out of the McMaster Innovation Park in Hamilton, Ontario.

About Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Inc. (www.oce-ontario.org)

Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) drives the commercialization of cutting-edge research to build the economy of tomorrow and secure Ontario’s global competitiveness. OCE fosters the training and development of the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs and is a key partner with Ontario’s industry, universities, colleges, research hospitals, domestic and foreign investors, and government ministries. A champion of leading-edge technologies, best practices, innovation, entrepreneurship and research, OCE invests in such areas as advanced health, information and communications technology, digital media, advanced materials and manufacturing, agri-food, aerospace, transportation, energy, and the environment including water and mining. OCE is a key partner in delivering Ontario’s Innovation Agenda as a member of the province’s Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE), which helps Ontario-based entrepreneurs and industry rapidly grow their company and create jobs. Learn more at www.onebusiness.ca.

3StyleAvenue rounds out mobile app development offering with Weever Apps

3sHamilton, Canada — (ReleaseWire) — 08/25/2014 – 3StyleAvenue Bespoke Digital Agency is now utilizing Weever Apps’ patented application framework to round out their digital solutions offering. With offices in New York, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Japan, and with clients including Samsung and LG, 3StyleAvenue wanted to build out their end-to-end digital services by enhancing their focus on mobile solutions.

“Going Mobile is not an option anymore,” says Calvin Cai, Founder 3StyleAvenue, “and we want to be the best at translating digital experiences to the mobile landscape.” Currently over 50% of time spent on the Internet is through mobile devices and this is expected to increase to over 90% by 2017, according to Statista.com.

The Weever Apps framework helps agencies go from Concept-to-Demo-to-App in less time, so they can spend more time thinking about the solution and less time building it. The framework is used to develop apps in 65 countries and a total of 11 languages to date around the world.

“We love the flexibility of the Weever Apps solution,” explains Calvin. “We can develop and deploy web-based and published applications with very little effort. The functionality is all there, so we can spend our time more on strategy, design and shaping the user experience.”

The worldwide partnership will include expansion of Weever Apps’ platform into Asia through 3StyleAvenue’s client network. 3StyleAvenue will maintain the client relationship, including consultation and front-end design, while Weever Apps will provide back-end consultation, development and direct technical support.

With a focus on mobile use cases and architecture, 3StyleAvenue thrives on delivering seamless experience to help their client’s brands stand above others. Mobile development is another way 3StyleAvenue boosts client’s digital marketing presence. 3StyleAvenue works through a consultative process to understand client challenges and design mobile solutions that work to solve them.

“Our clients are realizing the power of mobile solutions,” concludes Calvin, “It’s helping them be more productive and efficient – and they’re seeing immediate results.”

 

About 3StyleAvenue

3StyleAvenue is a full service digital agency. Think strategy, innovation, marketing and media, but solely focused around online and the digital world. We believe that digital is at the forefront of commercial marketing and requires experts in the field to guide business’ forward.

Rather than just treat ‘online’ as an extension of your traditional marketing approach, 3StyleAvenue will help your business work for you with an approach specifically targeted towards online. The digital world is continuously evolving; 3StyleAvenue will ensure that your brand is at the forefront of this evolution and help you to drive leadership within your industry.

Rather than choose an agency that treats digital as a second priority, choose an agency where digital business is their core objective. True to our motto, “We build businesses, not just websites”.

Weever Apps: To learn more go to weeverapps.com email hello@weeverapps.com or call 800-299-0623.

Contact:
Andy Pritchard
Marketing Manager
andy@weeverapps.com
906-630-7939 or 800-299-0623

For more information on this press release visit: http://www.releasewire.com/press-releases/3styleavenue-bespoke-digital-agency-rounds-out-their-mobile-application-development-offering-with-weever-apps-540500.htm

Media Relations Contact
Andy Pritchard
Marketing Manager
Weever Apps
Telephone: 906-630-7939
Email: Click to Email Andy Pritchard
Web: http://Weeverapps.com/

Read more: http://digitaljournal.com/pr/2142405#ixzz3BkE4b97O

Mabel’s Labels ROWE policy attracts national media attention

mabels

 

Last year Hamilton-based e-commerce firm Mabel’s Labels (@mabelhood) implemented a Results-Only Work Environment (ROWE) policy:

 

 

Since then the policy has attracted national media attention, in particular with Alex Pineda’s (@alexpineda77) working trip through Europe being cited as an example. If you haven’t seen it already, check out coverage of the ROWE policy in The Globe and Mail and CBC’s The Exchange with Amanda Lang:

Travel the world and still get a paycheque: The allure of a results-only workplace – The Globe and Mail

Results-only workplace – The Exchange with Amanda Lang

 

Weever Apps helps CFL PA save time and money with mobile forms

Hamilton, ON — (SBWIRE) — 07/18/2014 – The mobile forms app market is one of the fastest growing sectors in the world today because companies are realizing the inherent advantages of converting their paper forms to mobile forms. Keeping up with that trend can be a daunting task for many firms. Fortunately, business owners can now get up to speed quickly and affordably with the help of Weever Apps.

By helping clients to evolve from paperwork to mobile forms, Weever Apps can build productivity, accelerate “quote to cash” timelines and reduce errors – including the headaches they cause. Mobile Forms allow employees to enter information into a form using any mobile device and, because they are using a tablet instead of paper, they can add pictures, GPS locations, contact dispatch and more…

According to Steve McBride, co-founder and CEO of Weever Apps, businesses can experience many immediate benefits by switching to Weever Apps’ mobile forms. “In many cases, clients are simply looking for digitized versions of their paper forms,” he explains. “We like to think of that as an evolution rather than a revolution. You don’t always have to reinvent the wheel to realize exceptional business results. We like to think of our solution as the simplest-to-use on the market.”

 

cflpa-logo

 

Increased real-time data accuracy was particularly noticeable in one assignment Weever Apps put together for the Canadian Football League Players’ Association. Weever Apps developed an app for them that enabled players to use mobile forms to sign up with the league and arrange things like equipment sizes, guest appearances and medical clearances.

“The CFLPA Mobile app has exceeded my expectations.” says Susan Gordon, VP Sales & Marketing for the CFL Players Association. “It has had an immediate impact in improved efficiencies by integrating DocuSign signatures inside the mobile app, thereby reducing administrative work and giving players access to critical documents while traveling. We plan to further expand the number and type of forms for even more productivity benefits.”

McBride adds, “It really accelerated the process. With our apps, there’s no need for faxes or scanning that might require info to be retyped and result in mistakes.”

Weever Apps can develop mobile forms easily with its innovative mobile app software platform, which can integrate form data and DocuSign secure e-signatures from any mobile device. It can also incorporate a cloud database to securely store all the data that’s collected and provide it to admin users through a user-friendly account manager. Weever Apps’ patented technology is compatible with all touch phones and tablets including Apple, BlackBerry 10, Windows 8 and Android.

“We give our clients the ability to reduce paper but we also enable them to collect, manage and share data in real time on any device, wherever they happen to be.” says McBride.

Many business functions become a snap with the help of Weever Apps’ mobile forms. For example, some firms are heavily dependent on collections to achieve a stable cash flow. Without a dependence on paper, collections can now be done in a matter of hours – rather than weeks. Sales becomes a much easier process. When they’re out on the road, salespeople can easily access actionable data, such as price lists, while managers can track their location using GPS functionality.

Affordability is another big selling point. Weever Apps provides professional services app development as well as a monthly subscription service, which allows clients to build their own mobile forms without any programming experience and can be deployed the same day and at a minimal monthly subscription cost.

McBride concludes, “Our clients are starting to realize the power of mobile forms. It’s helping them be more productive and efficient. They’re seeing immediate results.”

For more information visit WeeverApps.com/MobileForms. To contact directly email Hello@weeverapps.com or call 1-800-299-0623.

 

About Weever Apps

Weever Apps is an innovative smartphone applications company headquartered in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Since it was first established in 2011, Weever Apps has developed apps for many large and medium-sized firms such as London Life, the City of Hamilton, Foresters Insurance, McMaster University and Allergan Canada. To date, clients in over 65 countries around the world use the Weever Apps platform to create their own apps.

Contact

Andy Pritchard
Marketing Manager
andy@weeverapps.com
906.630.7939 or 1(800) 299-0623

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